Wednesday, May 30, 2007

What a Jewel ~ or, the Jewel Countdown...

Earlier this month we went down to Skagit County to see our friend & fellow shepherd, Donna. John was kind of scouting around to see if anyone had a little ewe lamb from this spring to get to keep Luna company. The ones that Donna had that he had thought he might like had been sold, but as they were walking through the pasture he spied this little girl - her name is Jewel. Isn't she a cutie? And when we found out that she had been born on our anniversary, that sealed the deal - of course we had to get her.

As you can see, she is light on the top and dark on the underbelly and legs. This marking is called Katmoget - we've never had any "kats" in our flock, so John is quite excited.

She won't be weaned for another month or so, so we'll just have to wait a while - When she comes, we'll separate Luna from her mom and put her and Jewel in the front pasture so they can get used to each other - I am anticipating a whole lot of wailing and gnashing of teeth. Especially the wailing - maybe we can be gone that day...ha, ha, ha...

Sunday, May 27, 2007

A year ago in the garden...

Our Emperess tree was blooming -

The pansies on the porch looked like little butterfles!

and the second crop of beans was coming up in the greenhouse.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Happy Birthday, Jordin

There are daughters "of the womb" and there are daughters "of the heart" - This is the daughter of our heart. We met her 13 years ago when she joined our choir. There have been ups and downs like there are with any child, but things right now are looking up. She is just graduating from City University as a teacher. We are so very proud of her!

Jordin was the bright spot in our week - we have both been very sick with a viral cold thing that has our heads stuffed up and has kept us awake at night coughing our (stuffed up) heads off. But Thursday was her birthday so we took advantage of the fact that she is up here from her home in the south Seattle area to house sit for her mom and dad when they went on a business trip, and took her out to dinner. Jordin, I won't show them the picture, but here was her reward for sitting there in that silly sombrero. . .

Sopapillas - a deep fried flour tortilla that has been sprinkled with cinnamon sugar and decorated with whipped cream, strawberry & chocolate syrup. Sliced up in wedges, like a pizza.

I think the "original" ones are a deep fried bread with butter & honey spread inside them, but the local Mexican restaurants generally use this style - a quick & easy & inexpensive treat to give your customers at the end of a meal - sort of like their answer to fortune cookies.

Anyhow, we had a lovely evening, forgot about our colds for a while. Her folks got back today, so she has gone home to her lonely husband. And who wouldn't be lonely when you didn't get to see this sweet smiling face every day. Glad you had a good birthday sweetie. We love you.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

A Fun Weekend (and Cream Scones)

We had our annual Free Church plant sale this past weekend. It is primarily put together by my DH, and our friends Vicki & Diane
We are lucky to have many donations of perennials from our church members and from a local garden club. This year we had lots of sedums , John brought trees and out of control Bonsai plants

and Diane made these cute little teapots planted with herbs - her husband had drilled holes in the bottom so they will drain.

What we don't sell on Saturday, we take up to church on Sunday and generally sell most of what is left over. This year we made over $1000!
I am in charge of taking the money. I am also the self designated morning snack bringer. So I was up at "O-Dark:30" putting together Cream Scones. They are just the best. You can use mini chocolate chips, but I like to use currents.

This recipe makes 16 large scones. They are delicious plain, but really good with butter and raspberry jam.

If I’m going to make these for breakfast, I mix all my dry ingredients the night before and cover the bowl with a towel (or plastic wrap, etc) – that way the next morning all I have to do is add the cream, mix, knead and form – don’t even need my glasses for that!)

3-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
¾ - 1 cup dried currents (don’t use raisins – they are too big)
2 cups chilled whipping cream
2 tablespoons butter, melted (optional)
Additional sugar (optional)

1. Heat oven to 375 F. Lightly grease 2 baking sheets (or use stoneware and you won’t need to grease them.
2. Stir together flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder and salt in large bowl. Stir in currents (or use mini chocolate chips and nuts – what ever strikes your fancy!) Make a “well” in your flour. 3. Stir whipping cream into flour mixture, stirring just until ingredients are moistened.
4. Turn mixture out onto lightly floured surface. Knead gently until soft dough forms (about 2 minutes). Divide dough into 4 equal balls*, flatten and cut into 4 wedges (total of 16 pieces) Put on baking sheet (I prefer stoneware, as the scones will not burn on the bottom that way.) and let rest 5 minutes. At this point you can brush with a little bit of cream or melted butter and sprinkle with sugar if you want.
5. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until lightly browned. Serve warm, sprinkled with powdered sugar, if desired. 16 scones.* You could also form into rectangles that can also be cut crosswise into smaller rectangles about 1-1/2 by 2 inches.
Grab a cup of coffee or a mug of tea and enjoy!

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Now blooming

Chinese Tree Peony out by the pond.

Monday, May 14, 2007


The best kind of friend will wait for you in any kind of weather

Any time of the day or night, he's there by the gate when we get home.

Maybe underfoot, but he's there to keep you company, what ever you are doing.
Thank you, Neelix.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Seven Random Facts -

Many in the cat blogosphere have been passing along the Seven Random Facts Meme this week. So many have done it that the last one I read just said they tapped "you" & "you" & "you" etc, get the drift - so I have decided that we (Neelix & Sinda & I) would take up the challenge and tell you some random things about ourselves - hopefully you'll still be speaking to us by the end of the seven...

#1 - (Tina) I grew up on a wheat farm in North Central Washington - there were 12 students in my high school graduating class - I went through all 12 years with nine of them.

#2 - (Tina) My hair is long - down to my waist (& I just had about 6 inches trimmed off!) The sides are dark blond - but the top is white - my own little skunk stripe!

#3 - (Tina) I love books - (John would say I hoard books) - I probably have over 100 cookbooks - and yet my favorite one is probably the 1960 Betty Crocker Cookbook that was my moms. I have all of the Taste of Home annual books. I also have all of Sue Grafton's Alphabet Mysteries to the most current, I have ALOT (50 or 60?) Nora Roberts books (however they may be going back to the bookstore for credit soon - need more room on the shelves) I have all of Anne McCaffrey's Dragonriders of Pern books. And Dianne Mott Davidson & Maeve Binchy, to name a couple of my othere favorites authors.

#4 - (Tina) I drive a teal colored 1991 Ford Festiva, affectionately called the Jelly Bean - they are great little cars - way too reliable, so they took them off the market. I Love that little car.

#5 - (Sinda) I just had my 17th birthday - I have lived with my "bean mom" my whole life, except when I was a tiny baby living with my birth mom. My favorite thing to do in the summer is drink out of the waterfall in dad's garden - but mom doesn't like it when I come in with wet legs.

#6 - (Neelix) Mom & dad found me at the Humane Society about 10 years ago - I was a very tiny kitty and very sick (the V-E-T said I probably shouldn't have been adopted out because I was so sick, but mom & dad took very good care of me and nursed me back to health) As a result of being so sick as a baby, I don't have a meow. I have several different chirping sounds - like "thanks for opening the door, it's about time you got here" and my "when is dinner?" chirp.

#7 - (All) We love to sing. Tina used to sing and play her guitar at a restaurant every Sunday night - she did it for 21 years. She is an alto and to this day, when she sings along with the singers on the radio, she sings the harmony part. Neelix & Sinda like the song the B.Kliban wrote

"Love them little mousies, Mousies what I love to eat,
Bite they tiny heads off, Nibble on they tiny feet"

Well, that's all folks - hope you were entertained - I couldn't close without my favorite garden photo from last week - what a sweet face! Oh, and "Tag! You're it" Don't forget to share YOUR Seven Random Facts.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Moving Day

Did someone hear the gate open?

I think so - outta the way! We're comin' thru!

MOOOOOve it -

Hey, what are we, chopped liver - why do you guys get the belly high grass?

This was the scene last Saturday when John started the process to combine the flock - the babies are old enough to keep out of the way of the older girls - they still got chased around a bit by Gwendolyn -

Her Supreme Royal Highness kind of took over while Queen Regina was out of the barn, but I understand that she has been demoted...that's the way of the barnyard.

Thanks for the kind thoughts about my bro-in-law - the surgery went better than expected. They removed the tumor and he is doing well. He will be having chemotherapy starting next week. This was so unexpected, and has caught us all by surprise. I can't think of anything else to say, but "Get well, James - miracles do happen!"

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Sometimes life just ain't fair...

The phone rang at 6:30 yesterday a.m. - I hate it when the phone rings at 6:30 in the morning, generally the news is not good - and it wasn't - it was my oldest sister, Wisten, and she was calling to tell me that our sister Merrill's husband James had been taken to the hospital - he had gone to the Dr. on Monday because he wasn't feeling well and they sent him straight to the hospital - "They say he has cancer" she told me.
"They would be doing more tests today. "

I talked with Merrill tonight - my brother-in-law has been diagnosed with colon cancer. Please hold him in your hearts and prayers. He will have surgery tomorrow (Thurs. May 10) at Yakima Memorial Hospital.

Thank you.

Saturday, May 05, 2007


My friends Suzanne & Toni have nominated us at A Blip on the Radar for the Thinking Blogger award. I am honored - and according to The Rules, I now need to nominate five more bloggers whose blog gives me pause (or paws, in some cases)

I nominate:

GTR at Raising Frolic I enjoy her point of view on things.

Lavender Sheep's Fiber Garden - It makes me think about what is possible and I love looking at all the cool things that she makes with fiber.

Clare at Three Beautiful Things - Everyone should look for at least three beautiful things in their life every day!

My friends Kathy and Michelle They both write great stories about life and families - I look forward each day to seeing what they have to say (and they help keep me sane)!

I know that's five already, but I want to include Tammy at Musings from Fairlight Farms - her stories of farm life are sometimes funny and sometimes sad - but they give a very honest view of farming and doing it on your own!

The participation rules are simple:
1. If you get tagged, write a post with links to 5 blogs that make you think,
2. Link back to this post so that people can easily find the exact origin of the meme,
3. Optional: Proudly display the 'Thinking Blogger Award' with a link to the post that you wrote (here is an alternative silver version if gold doesn't fit your blog).

AND - BIG TA DA, as you can see, I have finally figured out (thanks to Skeezix's Cat Blog Help Center) how to do imbeded links! Thank you to Skeezix & all those techie cats for solving this little mystery of life for me.

Bigger TA DA - This week marks one year of blogging - I started Sunday May 7, 2006 after receiving a cancer diagnosis - and a year later, life goes on, cancer free - it was, as my sister hoped, just "A Blip on the Radar". Thanks for coming along for the ride - hope you'll stay for a while.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Vishus Sheep

My friend Rascal( ) mentioned that the sheep mom (her name is Regina, by the way) didn't look like some sheep who should be messed with - he's right - at least with kitties - she keeps a firm hoof on things - Neelix just wanted to say "hi" to the babies through the fence, but she wouldn't have it -

She ran right over and stomped her foot - Neelix was like "I'm outta here, not gonna deal with this vishus sheep today!" Poor Neelix

"Think I'll go take a nap someplace sunny! "

Elsewhere on the farm -

native bleeding heart in John's garden - isn't it sweet?

And the bonsai collection comes out of the greenhouse for the summer!